The Darkest Little Room
Transit Lounge, $29.95 pb, 272 pp, 9781921924248
he Darkest Little Room, Patrick Holland’s latest novel, looks at sexual slavery and obsession in South-East Asia. The protagonist is Joseph, an Australian reporter travelling in Vietnam. Intent on finding a beautiful woman glimpsed briefly, he receives word that she may be working in a brothel known as ‘the darkest little room’. In pursuing this lead, Joseph meets and falls in love with a prostitute named Thuy. Attracted to her because she is ‘weak’ and ‘beautiful’, he wants to save her from her sordid way of life. Then Joseph starts purchasing heroin for Thuy. His morals are challenged and his life endangered.